Scientific Journal of the BirdLife Hungary

A Magyar Madártani és Természetvédelmi Egyesület tudományos folyóirata

Ornis Hungarica. vol.28(1). (2020) p.76-91.

The role of reedbeds in secondary habitats during the migration and breeding of reed warblers
László Bozó

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The reedbeds provide essential habitat for many Acrocephalus and Locustella species during both breeding and migration periods. The nesting and the migration of these species have been the subject of detailed research over the past half century in the Carpathian Basin. However, these studies have focused primarily on natural habitats and large reedbeds and thus, little is known about the role of smaller habitat fragments in the migration and nesting of these species. During my work, I studied the spring and autumn migration of five passerines in a landscape dominated by agricultural land in Southeast Hungary. Field observations were carried out to survey the populations of different species between 2010–2019. To study their migration, I used the method of bird ringing between 2016–2019 in an oleaster forest and a drainage canal. I was able to determine the migration periods of the species and in autumn, to calculate the time spent in the research area based on the recaptures. In conclusion, reedbeds in secondary habitats play a similar role in the migration of the most common Acrocephalus and Locustella species as in the natural habitats in different regions of the Carpathian Basin. There are differences among species in the timing of migration, the length of time spent here, and the accumulated fat stores. As these species nest in small numbers in the area, primarily individuals from more distant populations occur here during the migration.